Description of the collection

The National Library's Indonesian collection is the largest collection of Indonesian language material in Australia and one of largest contemporary collections in the world. It comprise over 200 000 volumes of monographs, 5 000 serial and 250 newspaper titles plus several thousand reels of microfilm and sheets of microfiche.

The strength of the collection lies in the volume of contemporary publications which have been acquired through the National Library's Indonesian Acquisition Office/Regional Office in Jakarta since the early 1970's. Through this Office, the Library has obtained considerable strengths in the subject fields of government and politics, the social sciences, development studies, statistics and law. The majority of the material acquired is in the Indonesian language, however there are also items in English and in regional languages. The publications are acquired from a number of sources, including government agencies, universities and commercial publishers.

The Library also has strong historical collections from the period of the Dutch administration in Indonesia. These Dutch language sources consist of government reports, monographs and newspapers covering various aspects of social, economic and political importance for Indonesia up to 1940. These books were acquired from second-hand booksellers and as gifts. No original colonial records are held, except through purchases of commercially produced microfilms based on archives and libraries.

The period of the Japanese occupation in Indonesia is covered as well; the Library has significant collections of newspapers and reports for this period, in Indonesian and in Japanese.

Use of the Indonesian collection

The Indonesian collection is housed the Library’s main collection and can be requested for use in the Main Reading Room. Remote users may request material on interlibrary loan through their own library, or request photocopies of items through the Copies Direct service.

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